A. THE COUNTRY
The Republic of Zambia is a landlocked country in central/southern
Africa. Government is a multiparty democracy and Zambia remains a
nation of stability and peace surrounded by countries rocked by war and
strife. In the economy, copper mining and refining are subject to
global markets, and there are problems associated with access to
seaports, mismanagement and corruption and harsh World Bank impositions
regarding debt repayments. The country has many natural resources and
many are employed in agriculture. Boosts to the economy are
contributions of “exiled” Zimbabwean farmers and valuable (but highly
controversial) investment from China and India.
B. THE PEOPLE
The population is ~13,500,000 and official language English. Zambia has
80 ethnic groups. ~97.8% are Bantu, ~0.5% Khoisan (Bushmen), ~1.7% are
Foreign-origin. These numbers do not include the many refugees from
African countries. Poverty has many aspects:
Erratic weather and markets affect employment in agriculture and mining,
between 33% and 50% of children are malnourished, 40% of the people do
not have access to clean water or adequate sanitation, illiteracy in
rural areas is 90%, almost 75% of Zambian households care for a relative
orphaned by AIDS and over 90,000 children live on the streets. The
“brain drain” of many of Africa’s brightest and best to richer nations
impacts Zambia deeply.
C. RELIGIONS AND CHRISTIANITY/PENTECOSTALISM
Zambia has religious freedom for all faiths. It is declared a Christian
nation in the constitution, but the outworking has been a challenge.
~86.95% claim to be Christian, ~10.8% Ethnoreligionist, ~1.35% Muslim,
~0.35% Muslim, ~0.4% Baha’i, ~0.34% Non-religious, ~0.1% Hindu.
Witchcraft and sorcery, based on animism, are rarely expressed as a
separate religion, but often overlap with and pollute Christian belief.
In the Christian category:
~38.67% are Protestant, ~28.59% Catholic, ~14.05% Independent, ~9.1%
Unaffiliated, ~1.03% Anglican, ~0.06% Orthodox.
Evangelicals represent ~25.7% of the population.
Charismatics represent ~25.8% and of those ~10.7% are Pentecostals.
Operation World, Jason Mandryk. Colorado Springs: Biblica Publishing, 2010.